A smaller ship has its benefits: It was easier to get on, get off, find a deck chair, and find a chair at the shows. But this is an older ship, it is worn on the edges, had some bed smells, and had a funky cabin layout (The 4 of us were layered like a Jenga game). The bands play in odd places that don't have chairs to watch them from. Even being an older ship, it is Carnival, and the staff is excellent. Our steward was awesome. The comedians were good. The staff we interacted with around the ship was great.
The food was good, not great, not bad. The breakfast in the dining room was not the best, we had the same menu items on the Vista last spring and they were far better then.
Catalina is a great stop, but the cruise passengers and their rental golf carts disturb the peace as they race around on their gas powered vehicles. We hiked up into the hills around town, that was really fun. Ensenada is nice along the waterfront and the fish market, but the the main shopping street was too much; very high pressure people on the street trying to get you in their store. I was exhausted from saying, "Gracias No". We bought souvenirs from an older couple that owned a store and did not hassle us.
The Love and Marraige show, Hairy Chest Competition, and one of the comedians were fun.
This was our first cruise, out of five, that loud passengers woke us up at bar closing time. They woke us up every night as they stumbled back to their cabins. Perhaps because this was a 4 night cruise, not to sound snobby but we had only been on 7 night cruises before this.
Our kids liked being in their clubs as usual.
We did not do any shore excursions.
We booked this cruise 4 days before sailing and paid $1,000 for four people including tax and gratuities.
Smaller than we are used to, both kids were in bunks, one over our heads and the other over our feet. Bit like a Jenga game, the beds stayed down and made it hard to walk around. The bathroom was big enough and very functional.
The main drag is full of high pressure sales people
Easy parking and close to the ship, short lines. Expensive parking at $23 per day.
Fun to walk around, annoying gas powered golf carts rented by cruise passengers destroy the peace and quiet.